Student Tips for the TestTips for working with the ACA Exams and Interface
This page gives some quick tips for students before testing. It’s not comprehensive at all, but is a great start! If we can get permission from Certiport to use pictures of the screen- we intend to make this much more detailed and specific!
1. Reset simulation questions.
RESET THE QUESTION IF YOU POKE AROUND THE INTERFACE!! It’s OK to poke around… but after you find the right answer (or if you mess up), be sure to reset the question and just do exactly (and only) what you need to do to answer the question. If the sim shows you the right result, you did it right. If not, try another way or try again. Sometimes the sims can be a little picky.
2. If you’re not a fast reader, skip the scenarios.
Some of the questions are “scenario-enhanced,” meaning that there is a background story to give you a better picture of why you might be performing this task in real life. Often, the actual question is just a separate line under the “scenario” story. If you’re short on time or simply a slow reader, try skipping the scenario. If you don’t have enough information from the actual question, you can read the scenario… but many questions can be answered without the scenario.
Also, the scenario is exactly the same on every question- there are normally 5 questions for a scenario. You only have to read it once, but it’s there for review if you need it.
3. Mark for review… but sparingly.
If you encounter a question where you know the answer but it’s not coming to your mind at the moment- you can mark it for review and review it at the end. BUT- if you mark every answer for review, that’s the same as marking nothing for review. Use this very sparingly.
4. After reviewing a question, do not hit “next” or “back”.
After you review a question and answer it, DO NOT hit “next” or “back” buttons- click the one that takes you back to the overview. (What you see may be different if you’re using Console 8, the Mac launcher, or the old PC launcher). If you hit next or back and encounter another question, verify the answer for a multiple choice or matching, but if it’s a sim… see the next tip!
5. Redo any sim you go back to.
Anytime you go back to a simulation item, we STRONGLY recommend that you redo the question. In theory, it shouldn’t reset the question if you don’t touch anything- but many of us who have been doing this a long time find that scores seem to seriously drop when simulations are reviewed but not touched/changed. This makes us think that sometimes it resets the question if you just go back to it- even if you don’t touch anything. (It shouldn’t… but computers often do things they shouldn’t!)
6. You know it or you don’t.
Don’t stare at a question thinking the answer will come to you. It’s a timed test. If you don’t know the answer, mark it for review and come back to it if there’s time… but don’t waste a bunch of time staring at a question you don’t know the answer to when you could be answering questions you DO know the answer to!!
We’re really hoping to get permission to go into more detail for this whole page and the associated video, possibly even make a series of tutorials to help students on testing day… but for now this is all we can do! We’ll add more when and if we can!
Have more tips or tricks? Leave a comment below to help others in the same situation learn from your experience!